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On Her Majesty's Secret Service [VHS] [1969]

4.4 out of 5 stars 225 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: George Lazenby, Diana Rigg, Telly Savalas, Gabriele Ferzetti, Ilse Steppat
  • Directors: Peter R. Hunt
  • Writers: Ian Fleming, Richard Maibaum, Simon Raven
  • Producers: Albert R. Broccoli, Harry Saltzman, Stanley Sopel
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English, German
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: MGM
  • VHS Release Date: 3 Nov. 2003
  • Run Time: 127 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (225 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004CZGV
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 179,511 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Peter Hunt directs the sixth instalment of the James Bond franchise. Bond (George Lazenby) hands in his licence to kill after being banned from hunting down his arch-nemesis Blofeld (Telly Savalas). Continuing his investigations alone, he follows a lead to Portugal, meets and falls in love with Tracey Draco (Diana Rigg), and is told by her crime lord father that Blofeld is now in Switzerland.

From Amazon.co.uk

Australian model George Lazenby took up the mantle of the world's most suave secret agent when Sean Connery retired as James Bond--prematurely, it turned out. Connery returned in Diamonds Are Forever before leaving the role to Roger Moore, and Lazenby's subsequent career fizzled, yet this one-hit wonder is responsible for one of the best Bond films. In On Her Majesty's Secret Service, 007 leaves the Service to privately pursue his SPECTRE nemesis Blofeld (played this time by Telly Savalas), whose latest master plan threatens the world's crops with agricultural sterilisation. Bond teams up with smooth international crime-lord Draco (Gabriele Ferzetti) and falls in love with--and marries--his elegant daughter, Tracy (Diana Rigg). Bond monogamous? Not at first; after all he has Blofeld's harem to seduce. Lazenby hasn't the intensity of Connery but he has fun with his quips and even lampoons the Bond image in a playful pre-credits sequence. Rigg, fresh from playing sexy Emma Peel in The Avengers, matches 007 in every way. Former editor Peter Hunt makes a strong directorial debut, deftly handling the elaborate action sequences with a kinetic finesse and a dash of humour. Though not a hit on its original release, On Her Majesty's Secret Service has become a fan favourite and the closest the series has come to capturing the spirit of Ian Fleming's books. --Sean Axmaker, Amazon.com -- On the DVD: Affable and intelligent director Peter Hunt explains his ambition to take the series back to the original spirit of Fleming's books with this instalment. Out of all the Bond DVDs, his commentary track--interspliced with comments from other cast and crew members--is one of the most entertaining and informative as he chuckles over some of his more felicitous touches. Although sadly Diana Rigg is absent from the "making of" featurette, an older and wiser George Lazenby reveals how he acquired one of Connery's suits and went to the same barber in order to make himself look credible for the part. Hunt and others are disarmingly frank about how Lazenby's arrogance on set won him few friends. The late lamented Desmond Llewelyn, who played the boffin "Q", presents an amusing guide to the greatest gadgets of the series and explains how he can barely work a can opener in real life. The rest of the technical features are all present and correct and up to this series' usual high standards. --Leslie Felperin --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
No Bond film has suffered as much historical and critical revisionism as On Her Majesty's Secret Service. A huge hit on its first release and no better or worse reviewed than any of the preceding Bonds, George Lazenby's decision to leave the series before the film was released led to a tidal wave of attacks from the press and spurned co-producer Albert R. Broccoli (who even removed Lazenby's face from the original US poster!) that cast such a dark shadow over the film that the fact it's one of the highpoints of the series slipped from the public consciousness. Instead it became the Bond that flopped (if taking more than ten times its cost can be called flopping), the Bond that everybody hated (there were plenty of rave reviews to prove otherwise) with the Bond so bad he had to be fired (the producers tried to sign him up for several more pictures but, foolishly he admits, their new star thought the series was on the way out). It didn't help that the film was subsequently heavily cut for reissues and TV, and it's only with the Ultimate Edition DVD that the film is finally available in its absolutely uncut version (even the previous DVD was missing a few shots). Over the years its reputation has gradually grown, although EON clearly still regard it as the black sheep of the series: where the producers proudly boasted in 1970 that it was the fastest Bond to recoup its cost, for the documentary here they maintain it was the slowest. It's tempting to imagine whether 2006's Casino Royale would have met with similar treatment had Daniel Craig decided to call it a day before it opened...

It's all the more mystifying considering how fresh and genuinely exciting much of the film still is today.
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I'll preface this review by saying, this was the first Bond picture I ever saw (so I had no sense of Connery's performance). Having said that- and confirming Connery is the best of all the actors to have played Bond- OHMSS remains my personal favorite.
I also will state that George Lazenby (for my money), is the only other person to have played Bond well. He played it differently and yet he was able to carry off the suave and the brutal sides of the character with great style. This was no easy feat- even with Peter Hunt's help. To fill the shoes of both Connery and Bond was no easy task and, being the first to do so in what has been a succession of actors now, was both tough and overwhelming in weight and response.
This film departed from the rest of the series and reached back to both the elements of the books, and giving Bond an equal in his love interest. Tracy (the magnificent Diana Rigg) was dangerous, self destructive and yet mesmerizing. This film demands some sudden vulnerability and humanity from Bond, and this is where I think Lazenby and Hunt succeeded. They still retain enough of the gadgets, the threat to the world ( Telly Savalas in a finally fleshed out, equally suave and terrific portrayal of Bond's arch enemy, Ernst Stavaro Blofeld), and the womanizing. Still- Bond is suddenly seen needing or wanting something more.
It has John Barry's best Bond score (with Louis Armstrong singing the love theme in what was one of his best and last performances).
The fight sequences are great- the locations, pure Bond in scope and size and the performances of all, above and beyond. M, Moneypenny and Q, and Gabriele Ferzetti (as Rigg's father)- all terrific.
A recent polling indicated that this had placed in the top 5 of all Bond films with the British.
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Format: DVD

A grand extraordinaire of a James Bond film. It's difficult at times to find a better Bond film than this one. Known sometimes to me as "The Christmas James Bond film", On Her Majesty's Secret Service never ceases to amaze and entertain.

Geroge Lazenby, while not Connery, gives a solid portrayal of James Bond 007. He's a man of action, and this film very well supports that, giving him much to do in it. I feel, while I like the four other Bond actors better at times, for this single film, Lazenby showed off some very good points and he gives a better performance in it to just be labeled "that other guy that just did one."

Diana Rigg; a true angel of a Bond girl. In my opinion, what can be said about her performance as Tracy is mostly all good points. She's tough and resourceful, but not to a point where she's trying to be better than Bond, and she doesn't always remind the audience that she can do as much as he can, she just plays the role, and she plays it well. Her scenes of lashing against her father's words and her eventual fall for Bond are acted out quite well. As is, which I say is perhaps the classiest moment in the film series, her skating onto the scene to help Bond escape from Irma Bunt and SPECTRE. Her death at the end of the film is a strong one, strong enough that the James Bond theme is played at the very end to remind people that this is a Bond film, no matter what these large differences are that have yet to occur in the series, (such as the Bond girl being killed).

Ernst Stavro Blofeld and Irma Bunt are very solid Bond villains. They both deliver well, with Bunt's casual barking of orders at dinner to be quite the way she defines her respect. I have come to like Telly Savalas performance more and more over time.
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